The Sunrise Balloon-Borne Stratospheric Solar Observatory by Peter Barthol
The central aim of the Sunrise project is to understand the structure and dynamics of the magnetic field in the solar atmosphere. The magnetic field is the source of solar activity, controls the space environment of the Earth and causes the variability of solar irradiance, which may be a significant driver of long-term changes of the terrestrial climate. Interacting with the convective plasma flow, the magnetic field in the solar photosphere develops intense field concentrations on scales below 100 km, which are crucial for the dynamics and energetics of the whole solar atmosphere. These spatial scales cannot be studied systematically from the ground because of image distortions due to atmospheric turbulence. The balloon-borne Sunrise telescope has, for the first time, provided measurements of the magnetic structure of the solar atmosphere on its intrinsic spatial and temporal scales. The book gives an overview about the instrumentation and the successful flight in 2009.